Feeds

EC's big stick getting bigger

Microsoft sweating

Security for virtualized datacentres

With unnamed sources once again leaking the European Commission is "close" to following through and actually fining Microsoft millions of dollars for breaching antitrust laws, it comes as a surprise to learn Microsoft could actually be getting off light.

The Commission is increasing its fines to 30 per cent of total annual turn over for every year a company broke the law, adding that some offenders will end up paying even more as this number will serve as an "entry level" fine. The Commission has until now creamed 10 per cent from companies' revenues for each year of the offense.

Companies that continue to break the law will also pay more. The EC is increasing these fines by up to 100 per cent, compared to today's 50 per cent.

Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes, explaining the increase said in a blunt statement that indicated how she really felt about being harried and castigated in public by Microsoft's blunderbuss-like legal team: "Don't break the antitrust rules: if you do, stop it as quickly as possible. Once you've stopped, don't do it again... if companies do not pay attention... they will pay a very high price."

Microsoft is currently in line to pay the 10 per cent number, totaling $2.51m a day backdated to December 15 for failing to obey a March 2004 ruling ordering it to share Windows communications protocols with rivals, and also to deliver a version of Windows without Media player included.

It is unclear whether Microsoft would qualify for the newer fines, but all signs indicate this will not be the case, as the fines will apply to law breakers caught after introduction during the next two months. A Commission spokeswoman told The Register a decision to impose Microsoft's fine would be taken "before the end of July."®

Business security measures using SSL

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.